Every year, the MLB season wraps up with the World Series, the best of seven-game series where the champions of the American League (AL) and the National League (NL) face off. The team who wins the best of seven series becomes the World Series champions, although, that is not the only title that can be won. 

The Willie Mays World Series Most Valuable Player Award, as it was renamed in 2017, is another honor in the world of baseball. The award was first given in 1955 to Johnny Podres, a pitcher for the Dodgers. When the award was first given, it was distributed by the editors of Sport Magazine. Now, a much larger pool of individuals have a say in who takes home the title. The recipient of the World Series MVP award is decided in a collaboration of fans who vote, members of the media and MLB officials. 

Read below for a list of past World Series MVPs.

In recent years, two shortstops, Jeremy Peña of the Houston Astros and Corey Seager of the Dodgers took home the MVP award. The World Series of 2020, 2021 and 2022 all went to six games. 


2022: Jeremy Peña, Houston Astros, Shortstop 

2021: Jorge Soler, Atlanta Braves, Outfielder

2020: Corey Seager, Los Angeles Dodgers, Shortstop

The Giants had three World Series wins during this time period, with their first in 2010, a second in 2012 and a third in 2014. 

Overall, the MVP recipients of this time played all different positions. The pool of winners included pitchers, outfielders, third basemen, a first baseman, a catcher, a designated hitter and a shortstop. 


2019: Stephen Strasburg, Washington Nationals, Pitcher

2018: Steve Pearce, Boston Red Sox, First baseman

2017: George Springer, Houston Astros, Outfielder

2016: Ben Zobrist, Chicago Cubs, Outfielder

2015: Salvador Perez, Kansas City Royals, Catcher

2014: Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco Giants, Pitcher

2013: David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox, Designated Hitter

2012: Pablo Sandoval, San Francisco Giants, Third baseman

2011: David Freese, St. Louis Cardinals, Third baseman

2010: Edgar Renteria, San Francisco Giants, Shortstop

The 2001 World Series marked the first time that two players were named World Series MVPs. Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling both pitched during the 2001 World Series, leading to the Diamondbacks defeat of the Yankees. The two pitchers were named co-MVPs that year. 


2009: Hideki Matsui, New York Yankees, Designated hitter

2008: Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies, Starting pitcher

2007: Mike Lowell, Boston Red Sox, Third baseman

2006: David Eckstein, St. Louis Cardinals, Shortstop

2005: Jermaine Dye, Chicago White Sox, Outfielder

2004: Manny Ramirez, Boston Red Sox, Outfielder

2003: Josh Beckett, Florida Marlins, Starting pitcher

2002: Troy Glaus, Anaheim Angels, Third baseman

2001: Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling, Arizona Diamondbacks, Starting pitchers

2000: Derek Jeter, New York Yankees, Shortstop

MLB players began going on strike in the middle of August during the 1994 season. The strike went through the post-season, leading the World Series to be canceled. This was the second time in MLB history that the World Series was canceled, but the first time and only time since the MVP award started being distributed. 

During the 90s, the pitchers were the shining stars, with six MVP awards given to players in that position.


1999: Mariano Rivera, New York Yankees, Relief pitcher

1998: Scott Brosius, New York Yankees, Third baseman

1997: Livan Hernandez, Florida Marlins, Pitcher

1996: John Wetteland, New York Yankees, Relief pitcher

1995: Tom Glavine, Atlanta Braves, Pitcher

1994: No World Series

1993: Paul Monitor, Toronto Blue Jays, DH/1B/3B

1992: Pat Borders, Toronto Blue Jays, Catcher

1991: Jack Morris, Minnesota Twins, Starting pitcher

1990: Jose Rijo, Cincinnati Reds, Pitcher

Mainly pitchers and catchers were named MVPs of the 80s. Three catchers and four pitchers made up the bunch. Mike Schmidt, a third baseman, Alan Trammell, a shortstop, and Ray Knight, a third baseman, made up the rest of the winners. 

1989: Dave Stewart, Oakland Athletics, Pitcher

1988: Orel Hershiser, Los Angeles Dodgers, Pitcher

1987: Frank Viola, Minnesota Twins, Pitcher

1986: Ray Knight, New York Mets, Third baseman

1985: Bret Saberhagen, Kansas City Royals, Pitcher

1984: Alan Trammell, Detroit Tigers, Shortstop

1983: Rick Dempsey, Baltimore Orioles, Catcher

1982: Darrell Porter, St. Louis Cardinals, Catcher

1981: Steve Yeager, Los Angeles Dodgers, Catcher

1980: Mike Schmidt, Philadelphia Phillies, Third baseman

For a good portion of the 70s, the Athletics dominated the MLB, with three World Series appearances and wins in a row. They first won in 1972, when Gene Tenace, a catcher, was awarded the MVP. Then in 1972, they won again, this time awarding Reggie Jackson, an outfielder, the award. Jackson won the award again a few years later, in 1977 while he was playing on the Yankees. 

In 1974, the Athletics won their third World Series in a row, with Rollie Fingers, a relief pitcher earning the MVP.

1979: Willie Stargell, Pittsburgh Pirates, First baseman

1978: Bucky Dent, New York Yankees, Shortstop

1977: Reggie Jackson, New York Yankees, Outfielder

1976: Johnny Bench, Cincinnati Reds, Catcher

1975: Pete Rose, Cincinnati Reds, Third baseman

1974: Rollie Fingers, Oakland Athletics, Relief pitcher

1973: Reggie Jackson, Oakland Athletics, Outfielder

1972: Gene Tenace, Oakland Athletics, Catcher

1971: Roberto Clemente, Pittsburgh Pirates, Outfielder

1970: Brooks Robinson, Baltimore Orioles, Third baseman

For the large majority of winners, they are members of the winning team. Although, in 1960, the MVP went to Bobby Richardson of the New York Yankees, who lost the series. This was the only time in the award’s history that the title went to a player on the losing team. 


1969: Donn Clendenon, New York Mets, First Baseman

1968: Mickey Lolich, Detroit Tigers, Pitcher

1967: Bob Gibson, St. Louis Cardinals, Pitcher

1966: Frank Robinson, Baltimore Orioles, Outfielder

1965: Sandy Koufax, Los Angeles Dodgers, Pitcher

1964: Bob Gibson, St. Louis Cardinals, Pitcher

1963: Sandy Koufax, Los Angeles Dodgers, Pitcher

1962: Ralph Terry, New York Yankees, Pitcher

1961: Whitey Ford, New York Yankees, Pitcher

1960: Bobby Richardson, New York Yankees, Second baseman

The 1955 World Series saw the start of the World Series MVP. The first player to take home the award was Dodgers pitcher Johnny Podres. The Dodgers were able to beat the Yankees for the World Series title that year. 

1959: Larry Sherry, Los Angeles Dodgers, Relief pitcher

1958: Bob Turley, New York Yankees, Pitcher

1957: Lew Burdette, Milwaukee Braves, Pitcher

1956: Don Larsen, New York Yankees, Pitcher

1955: Johnny Podres, Brooklyn Dodgers, Pitcher